Uses and Consequences of the Self Fulfilling Prophecy Essay

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Uses and Consequences of the Self Fulfilling Prophecy


The Self Fulfilling Prophecy is a concept that should be quite familiar in the classroom, yet is still a mystery to many teachers today. Learning to properly use this idea will ultimately result in higher student scores directly, and on a higher level, will cause students to model the expectations of the teacher and expect much of themselves. This will set students up for highly successful autonomous learning. However, ignorance or improper use of the SFP does not stimulate learning, but may inhibit accomplishment. Teachers must strive to achieve a better understanding of this “Pygmalion Effect” to create a powerful learning environment.

Uses and Consequences
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Analysis of other teachers’ methods is a solid study base from which teachers can build a working knowledge for use of SFP. Combine these findings with ones own past experiences will result in a much more effective learning environment, one where the students are inspired by the teacher to learn to their maximum potential. On a higher level, this in itself is an example of Pygmalion in practice. The teacher expects more out of himself, through the students, than he is achieving at the moment. Therefore, he raises expectations for himself, and in application he will eventually become stronger for it.

The idea of the Pygmalion effect has been around for many years. Even before it was named, many phrases were coined from its principles. “The first impression is the lasting impression” demonstrates just one of the many adversities of the SFP. “The way others perceive us is largely conditioned by expectations they may have in advance,” (The Pygmalion Effect). All too often, teachers make the mistake that we learn, and even consider a skill, of profiling a student and determining their characteristics, before the first words are spoken (Tauber, 1998). Race, gender, and build, are just a few factors influencing this pre-determination in the first few seconds of contact. Teachers then further this profiling system by the events of the first day. This pattern is highly